The following material is adapted from a handout prepared by Harry Livermore for his high school English classes at Cook High School in Adel, Georgia. See, first, Writing Introductory Paragraphs for different ways of getting your reader involved in your essay.
The introductory paragraph should also include the thesis statement, a kind of mini-outline for the paper: it tells the reader what the essay is about.
The first sentence of this paragraph should include the "reverse hook" which ties in with the transitional hook at the end of the introductory paragraph.
The topic for this paragraph should be in the first or second sentence.
This hook also leads into the last, or concluding, paragraph.
This paragraph should include the following: Stephen King, creator of such stories as Carrie and Pet Sematary, stated that the Edgar Allan Poe stories he read as a child gave him the inspiration and instruction he needed to become the writer that he is.
This first sentence also lets the reader know that this paragraph will deal with descriptions of people: ".
The 5-paragraph essay is the most common academic task a student may face.
The last sentence of this paragraph must also contain a transitional "hook" which moves the reader to the first paragraph of the body of the paper.
The first paragraph of the body should contain the strongest argument, most significant example, cleverest illustration, or an obvious beginning point.